Nano-6+11

Michael in GA writes:

I was going to submit a review of the Beretta Nano, but TTAG already has a couple articles on the Nano and a review by Destinee. Those submissions, being very informative and thorough, however, lack one key element. What can you expect from 18 months of EDC and 2,000-3,000 rounds of range time? So I won’t review the Nano because a bigger issue arose yesterday at the range . . .

My wife has has carried a Nano in her purse since Valentine’s Day 2013. That spring, we signed up for a class given by the county police which granted us the use of the law enforcement shooting range one Saturday each month for a year. In August of that year we bought two memberships at a local gun range giving us unlimited range time for one year.

We made most of the Saturdays at the Police range, even in the rain when it was only the two of us and the RO. We maintained a ritual of meeting after work every Monday at the commercial range and each time we shot a minimum of 50 rounds each. Add to that, all the visits to the range before getting our passes having to pay-as-we-go, and that comes to well over 2,500 rounds fired from her pistol.

On our last prepaid visit to the range in August, we ran out of Federal ball, so I loaded her magazine with Tul-Ammo. I shoot that stuff with my GLOCK all the time because…GLOCK. She gets all the brass cased ammo because…well she just does.

She pulled the trigger and click. She racked the slide, aimed and click. She ejected those rounds and I inspected them. They had a striker mark on the primer. I loaded them in my pistol and fired both of them. We called it a day and told the guy in the shop what happened. He said, “Bad ammo”. I told him it worked in my GLOCK and he said “GLOCKs eat everything.” So we left and she loaded her “good ammo” — Winchester 124 grain +P — and we hadn’t been shooting since. Until yesterday.

I had new sights on my pistol and wanted to get familiar with them. My wife had an itchy finger after three months off from shooting. She went to the line first and…click. She removed the magazine and ejected the round and it, too had the slight pin strike on the primer. She wanted to see if it was an ammo problem so she inserted her carry mag with her defensive rounds, loaded the chamber and click. The first thought I had was, broken firing pin or bad spring. The second thought I had was, OMG! She has been carrying an inoperable firearm for self defense for three months! You’re better off not carrying than having a false sense of security.

Good thing that range was where she bought the gun. They took care of sending it back to Beretta for repair. She has my GLOCK 19 on loan until her Nano is returned. Meanwhile I keep my AR in the truck for when I’m out and about. I can’t take a gun into work so my pistol stays locked in the car most of the day anyway.

So here is the point: Is it a good idea to own two identical carry pistols so that you can train extensively with one and not wear out the parts of your EDC gun? I think the practice has merit. One day my GLOCK will be out of commission. It would be nice…no…smart to have another GLOCK 19 that I have been training with to have for the rare instance that I need to save a life.

Seems like a simple, logical solution to curb wear and tear on your EDC gun while being able to train frequently with the same setup. It’s like a baseball player who has separate batting practice bats and matching gamers. Make sense?

 

114 Responses to Question of the Day: Should You Own Duplicate Carry Guns?

  1. Yes I do. I have a duplicate VP9 which I do not carry as much, it is my “pretty” VP9. I am going to get a duplicate Glock 30S too.

  2. Makes sense, but for the people who never put more than 500 rounds through their carry gun (of which I am sure there are a lot) it might be a waste of money.

  3. Wear out parts on your gun?

    Yeah, it can happen, but it’s exceedingly unlikely.

    Personally, I don’t have duplicate, I have quadruplicate.

    G19s. One on my person, one in the trunk, one in the safe at home and another in the nightstand. All have an IWB rig, a pair of spare mags, and all the related gear.

    If you’ve done this long enough and get the right pair like I did, kids are inevitable.

    John

  4. It makes sense, especially if one has to be sent in for repair. Even though none of my carry guns have ever had problems I keep a spare Nano and a spare P99c for good measure. That being said, I also sell off my carry guns every few years and rotate the stock.

  5. I’ve always thought it a good idea to have a duplicate so if one goes in for repair you don’t have to change your “manual of arms” on your carry gun.

  6. I keep about 5 guns that I could carry if need be. Some days I feel like SR9c some days SR9. Some days may be a EMP 1911 or full size 1911. Holsters do get expensive……..I think the wife said enough is enough. Just wait till she gets the bill when OPEN CARRY passes in Texas….

  7. I think it makes sense to maintain two copies of my carry item, alternating their use in practice. This reduces wear on the item carried without restricting practice round counts. It assures that if one pistol fails a function check, has a damaged/worn part, the other can be carried. Continuity of use with one action design, trigger, and balance seems critical to fast presentation and accurate shooting at speed. Perhaps I’m overly conservative of the little skill I do have with my carry pistol?

  8. I’d say the duplicate is overkill.
    Replace all your EDC handgun wear parts on a schedule, well before they break, and test often, inspect often.

    • Yes, this is my feeling as well. Replace wear parts on a schedule. That probably wouldn’t include the firing pin at 2,500 rounds but it could. It would likely include replacing recoil springs before this point. Having spare parts on hand is good.

      But you shouldn’t carry a gun that hasn’t been “proven,” so you’re going to need to put a decent amount of rounds through it no matter what. I suppose if you put 500 rounds through the carry gun and then do all of your subsequent practice with a second, no consideration for how many rounds go through it duplicate “beater” then it makes some degree of sense. I’d rather just replace wear parts though and use the exact same gun to make sure it’s running properly in addition to getting the training.

    • Slan,

      Parts can still fail in spite of the best scheduled maintenance plan.

      More importantly, if you have to use your firearm to defend yourself and police show up, they will almost certainly take your firearm as evidence. Depending on how quickly the police investigators and local district attorney conduct business, you could be without your primary firearm for at least several days if not months. That would be a good reason to have another everyday carry handgun available.

    • Agreed. If it is one of my carry pistols, and it is capable of moving, I have that spare part at the house. That and spare grip screws/other screws. Yeah, it’s between 30-$70 of parts depending on the gun, but say….. My kel tec’s spring or firing pi n go to shit, I’m back and ready within, ten or fifteen minutes. All of these baggies of parts are in my range bag or when I travel.

      I have several EDC type guns, so no reason to have duplicates. If you like duplicates, more power to ‘ya.

  9. I would take this as a live and learn lesson. If your EDC doesn’t fire at the range no matter the circumstance you had better make sure it is firing before you leave the range. I totally get the cause and effect reasoning for blaming the ammo.

    I think I will rephrase. I WILL take this as a live and learn lesson. Thank you for sharing.

  10. I have multiple guns I can carry. If one goes down for repair I just carry another. A far better practice is to do full maintenance on your gun after a set number of rounds just like you do on a car after a certain number of miles.

  11. I have two CZ-75s in 9mm. One is a full size 75B, the other a 75 Compact, (CZ model numbering sucks, by rights the compact should be a 7″5B compact”) Basically identical other than size and mag capacity (though both will take the full size mag, so my spare mag is a full size). I use the same compact (open muzzle) holster for both; they’re just about interchangeable unless I am about to get into a bucket seat wearing them.

    • I recommend getting rubber bottom from SP01 and sticking it to the 16rds magazine. It will fit the compact just perfect, eliminating the empty space. Of course, you won’t be able to use it in the full size then.

  12. After a certain point, the more rounds you put through your weapon, the more it will wear out, or be apt to have breakages.
    Of course some brands may wear out before the break in period. As a rough guess, I would say run 500 to 600 rounds through your piece. If you are are then satisfied with it’s reliability, retire it from active use. Use another gun for practice.
    Of course some of you are going to say that you have put 10,000 rounds through your personal weapon without a glitch! But! the 10,001 round might be the one you really need in a “situation” and it fails because of a weakened firing pin spring, or other “worn” part of the gun.
    Why take a chance? Yes! Use another duplicate weapon on the range, putting only a few rounds once in a while through you main weapon.

    • I had this guy try and tell me once that if you put 10,000 rounds through a semi auto UZI it will become worn down enough that it will go full auto.

      • There certainly have been examples of semi firearms that have had some part or another (probably the hammer and/or disconnector?) worn enough that they malfunction and fire more than once per pull of the trigger. This is not exactly “full auto” since you don’t necessarily have the control to stop firing until either the magazine is empty or the disconnector manages to catch the hammer.

  13. No duplicate really, because I would rather spend the money on an entirely separate gun, for diversity if nothing else. However, I have about a dozen different guns to choose from that I could carry (I have the appropriate holsters for all of them) should my primary gun go down for some reason.

    • If in the event you should ever get involved in a fire fight, and your gun failed, are you going to run home and grab another one?

      • I don’t think the point of this article was to CARRY a duplicate, it was to have one available to carry should the primary need repair. Whether to carry a BUG, and whether that BUG should be a duplicate of the primary, is a different subject.

        • Part of the point was to have a duplicate for when one goes out of service. But the main point was, train with one and don’t wear out the other.

        • Right–I stand corrected. Again, whether to carry a duplicate as a BUG, and indeed whether to carry a BUG, is a different subject.

    • Agree, plus have multiple revolvers. Open carry happens, will have one on the hip & one in a pocket. In SD you can believe it would be with a pocket LCR, don’t want my nicer revolvers languishing in evidence locker forever.

  14. Depends on what you carry. I pack either a Sig C3 1911 or a Walther P99. (Hot and cold weather respectively.) If either of those breaks I can carry another of my 1911s for hot weather or go back to the C3 for cold weather. As long as you’re comfortable with the manual of arms for your guns and carry high quality guns, I would avoid doubling up. (That’s one less unique gun you can own in your collection.) Then again, my priorities are a bit different than most.

  15. Not so much duplicates as similar,
    Glocks in different calibers and sizes that all operate the same way is not a bad way to go.

    • Though I am not a glockaholic (nor am I a glock hater), this is a very smart move on their part. It’s nice to have mag commonality (at least going up in mag capacity) between large and small models. (Similar situation exists with CZ-75, full size and compact, and CZ 2075 RAMIs, and I exploit that.)

    • That is one advantage of the same manufacturer for your family of firearms. My 19 runs like my 20 runs like my 26 runs like my 29….

      And it also speaks to the logic of a BUG. These are very reliable mechanical devices but they can and do fail however rarely. So an LCP is usually tucked into a pocket someplace regardless of my primary firearm.

      • I consider my primary to be a BUG, because I don’t expect to ever need it. If I need it and it doesn’t work, I guess it’s just not my day. But the concept of putting a few hundred rounds through a new carry gun and then putting it into semi-retirement and buying a new one to practice with, that makes some sense to me. As I’m planning to put a new gun in use a few months from now (it’s under the tree, needs to be broken in and find a holster), I will probably do just that. Take the carry piece out once a year or so to fire the ammo that’s been carried in it for a year, clean, lube and reload, then back in the holster for another year. The concept also bears fruit if you ever have to use the carry gun, the cops will likely have it for years, you can put the other one into use.

        • I feel the same way about BUGs. If I were a cop, or involved in some other job that increased the likelihood of getting into a firefight, I’d probably carry one. As it is, the odds that I’ll A) need to use my gun, B) it won’t work when I do, and C) I’ll still have time in that scenario to drop the primary and deploy a BUG just seem vanishingly small.

          I kind of feel the same way about the practice-gun-and-carry-gun solution proposed here. If your carry gun is getting up there in round count, replace the likely-to-break parts and carry on. 2500 rounds doesn’t seem like a very high count to me; it’s possible that whatever broke on this Nano could have broken at 501 rounds as easily as 2501, so I’m not sure the duplicate gun buys as much reliability as one might think. It’s definitely not a terrible idea if you have the money, though.

          I think the most important lesson of Michael’s experience should be “absolutely make sure your carry gun is in working order before you leave the range”.

          I hope there’s a follow-up when he gets the gun back; I’m curious to know what broke.

        • Assumption-the mother of all mess ups, not something that you should allow be a determinant in a life or death situation
          Larry-Don’t allow the illusion of safety to trump the actual steps needed to ensure it. You should shoot your edc once a month just to be sure the mechanical device works as you hope it will after it sits in the safe. Knowing your gun works and the ammo in your edc magazine still works for only a cost of five dollars is a monthly cost I can absorb. If your gun doesn’t work being at gun point is not the best time to find out like Michael in Ga. wife would have found out.
          Stinkeye-First rule of a gunfight is to avoid it but if not have a working gun. A back up in the same caliber as your primary is nice as it leads into the second rule of gunfighting, which is to bring friends with guns. If my primary fails the bug is readily available and if caught in a bad situation I can give a chance of armed defense to who is with me while I go towards the gunfire.

        • Jason, interesting concepts. Firing 8 JHP rounds every month from the primary, while blowing off 50-100 FMJs with the practice gun, would go through a box of JHP every 6 months, might be a player. I’m too lazy to clean that often, would have to come up with a system. Still, I don’t think you came up with a real understanding of what Stinkeye and I were saying, I would feel pretty comfortable not carrying at all, I don’t live in that kind of area. I carry everywhere instead, I’m right now sitting in front of my TV, working on my laptop, with a .40 Glock 4 feet from my arm, and I am carrying. I am ALWAYS carrying. But I see no reason to be more fanatical than that, though I understand there are people who live in places like Chicago or NYC who cannot comprehend an area where physical attack is all but unknown. Those places exist, and there are quite a few around Austin, TX. I would guess in other places in TX as well.

        • I found out while practicing at the range that the defensive JHP ammo I’ve been carrying for almost a year doesn’t always go bang when you want it to and it’s a name brand. I’ve been rotating my carry guns-carry one for two weeks then unload the ammo, clean the gun, oil,it and lock it up while I carry the other gun. I read an article about the amount of dust and lint that accumulates on your gun and on your backup magazine and decided that rotating and cleaning them was a good idea. Too must dust and lint in your gun or magazine will gunk up the works, and I did find quite a bit of gunk in one of my magazines. The problem with not going bang at the range has to do with all the loading and unloading into the magazine and out of the chamber. All this does is scar up the jackets on the ammo and sure enough one of those scarred up jackets would not eject halfway thru a practice round. NO BANG. As a result, besides regularly cleaning and rotating my carry guns, I make sure to fire the defensive ammo I’ve been carrying before it gets too scarred up and is rendered useless. I buy boxes of range ammo to practice with and at least once, but more likely twice a year I’ll be firing off the defensive ammo and replacing it with new stuff. I guess I need to find out if there’s a recommendation for my carry guns regarding replacing wearable parts. I have an XDS and a S&W Shield-anyone know if the manufacturers give a recommendation for replacing parts that wear? Better to replace before it’s too worn than have it fail when you need it most.

        • I use separate magazines for my defensive carry. Loading and unloading the magazine wears out the spring. The only round that gets scarred up is the one you chamber. That round can be taken out of the rotation and shot at the range.

  16. The moral of this story is ‘never assume you have bad ammo in your carry gun without confirming your self defense ammo works OK’.

    Personally I have too many wants (or too little cash) to keep an identical spare to my carry gun, but having an alternative carry gun is a good idea. In my case I carry a revolver and I have an auto I could carry in the unlikely event that my revolver went down. I’m not an operator or anything so in my case as long as it’s a weapon I’m familiar with it’s good enough.

    • That’s what I was trying to explain above! Thank you!

      I am not an operator at all much less operating operationally. The operative word there is “not”. That was 4, I claim the win.

  17. I wouldn’t bother with duplicating carry guns. I’ve got enough options that if one goes down, another gun from my safe will get the carry nod.

  18. Yes, it does make sense. The odds are that any gun you shoot frequently is more likely to run into a breakage/repair problem than to be pulled out in a defensive situation. Still, you don’t want to be without (or worse, stuck with a gun-shaped hunk of plastic) if that crucial moment does come.

    Personally, I only have one pistol (an all-purpose XDm compact), but my wife has an XD subcompact that’s functionally the same. Hers has less than 500 rounds through it, mine has probably triple that. Her main is my backup, and vice versa. Eventually, when finances permit, I plan to add a standard XD to complete the family set.

  19. Guns are like guitars, once you really get into ’em you can’t have too many. That said, parts do wear out and, after 2500 rounds, I’d think that would be a point where at least the recoil spring (s) would need replacing. It’s sort of like the cam-belt on your car: it’s a good idea to keep track of how many miles you have one it because it will fail. Fix what you have.

    • Y’know, if I replaced something like a recoil spring after x000 rounds, I would want to put a couple hundred rounds through the gun before I trusted it again. We’re shooting ourselves in the foot.

  20. If you’re shooting with a “duplicate” weapon at the range instead of your carry gun, then if your carry gun goes down, you’re not going to find out about it at the range. I’d rather shoot my EDC guns regularly so I know they are running smoothly.

    • I was not assuming one would never fire the main carry piece. I was thinking for every 500 rounds of target ammo shot with the training gun, shoot 50 hollow points with the EDC gun.

  21. the concept is beyond criticism. hi mileage/ lo mileage duplicates are an excellent format.
    here the struggle to maintain virtually identical operating actions is as close as i’ve gotten. i’m used to front pocket carry so burying an hp somewhere else on my person is weird at first. and almost certainly slower to produce. a second version of my go to is a good idea.
    but.
    i can’t help rather having something new and different.

  22. Not at this time. I do however have a collection of spare parts (springs, pins, wear parts, and such) and enough know-how to fix things if the breakdown isn’t something major.

  23. I have two of my primary carry guns because of all of the above as well as if i ever DO have to use it, it will probably be confiscated as evidence and you will not see it for a long time, if ever.

    • ^ A very good point, though I’ve always been concerned that if you ever did have to use it you might not get to keep any of your collection, at least not right away… Living in NY state that might actually be a possibility though.

  24. I have a carry rig for 3 of my pistols but most often I carry my PPS or P938, I could go without one or the other till repaired. If you only own one carryable pistol then def get another.

  25. Not sure that I agree with having the same gun for the reason outlined. It’s unlikely (IMO) that it will mess up, or that you would know it in the moment you need it, as evidenced in the story. Having multiple carry guns that you are trained and familiar with is a better option to me. I’d rather own all the guns, and have choices that I can move between if one is out of commission.

  26. Having something in the same class – duplicate or not – that you are equally comfortable and competent with is important. A duplicate would shrink the number of spare parts, magazines, holsters, etc, that the average person needs to accumulate for effective EDC, but some may still just like something slightly different.

    Having the duplicate is also important in the event that you have to use your gun in self-defense. Most investigating agencies are going to take your gun, initially; that may be short or long term. In the meantime, even in a good-shoot with no possibility of indictment, you need to have a duplicate or close analog to rotate into the EDC role.

  27. Yes.

    The first parts to go during high round counts, on my .40s, seems to be the recoil spring.

    I’ve got 2 Glocks 35s, 2 Smith 4006s, 3 Glock 23s, and multiple ARs. I can easily use spares and stay up and running with a familiar trigger pull, ergonomics, mag carriers, holsters, and manual of arms.

    Beware the guy who has multiple copies of the same firearm. He’s probably a gun nut.

  28. I have duplicate carry guns not for failure, but in case the cops take one one day. But I practice with all of my pistols, and have good OWB holsters for them, so I can carry any of them if need be.

  29. I carried my 1994 W German Sig P220 for 1.5 years and owned it for 2.5 years (wasn’t able to carry for 1st year due to where I lived). Put ~4,000 rnds through it since owning the gun, generally 200 rnds per range visit. The only reason I acquired a newer Sig P220 Extreme were for the night sights, short reset trigger, and the nice G10 grips. That and I didn’t want my German Sig to end up in an evidence locker should I need to use it. Still have yet to have any parts go bad, and yes I open and conceal a full size Sig daily, most of the time on my person unless at work (which is generally only ~20 hours a wk as I am a full time college student; conceal carry is permitted on campus and I carry everywhere there).

  30. Yes. I’ll refer you to “Rendezvous with Rama” for a detailed explanation for why I have three of each primary defensive firearm. Which for me personally, means three AR-15s (MRPs) and three Glocks (19s).

  31. The problem that I have with that line of thinking is what if the problem was not from wear and tear but from a defect? What if the defect was going to give out after 1 round or 2 or 3 or any number you want to put down. You stated it was a concern that your wife was walking around for 3 months with a gun that wouldn’t fire. If you didn’t test it often how do you know you didn’t have the same situation. In my opinion there is nothing wrong with having copies but you need to use both of them and in environments that they are going to be used-I usaually take off a day in February when I know it will be cold and sit my guns and ammo outside for a couple hours and then go shoot. But like most things in life-layers are better.

    • The jury is still out on the cause of the failure. I would think a defect would show up well before 3,000 rounds. This I do know, not all guns are defective, but they all can wear out.

      • Not to be “that guy” who opens this can of worms, but it might just be that the nano has more in common with the R51 than the Glock 17, if you get my drift.

        Now I am not trashing berretta but I have witnessed at least one lemon Nano. Of course one bad nano is anecdotal but I must say it was a real stinker. It was a friend’s and he brought it to the range when we went a as group from work. The firearm experienced multiple malfunctions (failures to eject) across at least two types of ammunition. I was surprised to learn that that very gun had been already been sent back to the factory for the same issue. Weeks later, he told me the front sight post fell off.

        Maybe get yourself a new Glock 19 and give your old one to the Mrs.?

        • mine has been similarly a piece of crap, faililng to either extract or eject. Of course the weaker the loading the worse it gets, but it has sometimes barfed on Nato spec and DID stovepipe a Gold Dot once.

          Not trusted any more, even for carrying hot loads.

        • Full disclosure, this Nano had those extraction failures quite frequently when new as well. I was going to report this in the review that was not written. The break in period seemed to take more than 500 rounds rather than the 100 to 200 that is recommended. It was doing better until it wasn’t.

        • I wouldn’t carry a Nano on a bet. I bought one for my wife and had the failure to extract problems that are referenced here. Without an external magazine catch it was very difficult to clear. You would never do it during a firefight. It was replaced with a Shield that has been 100% problem free.

        • Yes, I like the absence of protruding buttons on the Nano but the type three failures caused by the failed extraction require a slide lock to clear. The problem with the Nano when trying to clear this jam is the extremely strong recoil spring. Good recoil spring is great until you have a double feed. You have to hold the the slide back, press the mag release with the same hand and rip out the mag with the other hand. Three hands would be nice, or a tiny slide lock like on the Glock.

      • Update:
        Nano came back yesterday. The guy that received it was not there at the shop but Russ was there and he gave it to me. No explanation from Beretta. No work order. Just a pistol in bubble wrap in a blue plastic case. I said “That isn’t my case”. Russ said “Beretta sent it back in that case because we didn’t send it to them in a case so you can have it or leave it with us, whatever dude”.
        It looks like I got a new entire upper with the original barrel.
        I took it to the range and did ten individual shots (loading one round in the mag) from 15 yards and checking for slide lock after each shot. Worked flawlessly. Then I loaded five rounds and moved the target in to 7 yards and rapid fired them. I reloaded five more and rapid fired them. All was good. I took it back out to the shop floor and disassembled it. I did not recognize the underside of the slide. I know what it looks like and can identify the parts but what I mean is, the wear was different. Certain marks were not there that were there before.
        Another thing I noticed is, a lot of guys that were sending their Nanos back were complaining that they came back coated in gun grease. Mine was on the dry side.
        I need to talk to the guy that handled the return to see what work was done, but for now it is all good.

  32. Seems obvious.

    The solution is not to buy two identical guns in case one fails.

    The solution is to buy a Glock.

  33. Preppers have a saying, “Two is one, and one is none.” I’m not arguing for duplicates, but for having a spare.
    Machines break, and any altercation you are involved in will result in confiscation, and could also result in your inability to purchase a new firearm when you may really need one, as in Governor Rick Perry’s present situation.

  34. I see an issue here that is seemingly a blind spot: that the people who most need personal protection generally can’t afford one, let alone two, carry weapons. At the moment I’m stuck with a .22 mag for personal protection, because I can’t afford to replace my departed .357 yet.

    • I expect this year’s after-christmas sales to be large and compelling, and a great opportunity to get some good steel for cheap.

    • Kind of where I am. I have managed to collect a few low-cost handguns–one stays in the house when I am gone and spouse at home, one (theoretically) stays in spouses’ truck, and one I carry myself and keep near at work and at home and in my truck. Recently bought another, but it’s a single-action .22 LR revolver for plinking and shooting small game and pests, and I actually consider that one kind of an extravagance. I feel fortunate just to have all those bases covered.

    • I’m thinking that free guns are a long way off, from this govt. That sounds like what you are angling for. Paying attention to the various possibilities, their costs and benefits, could prepare you to make a correct decision when you find yourself able to purchase a defense weapon. Until then, well, shoot, you have nothing to steal, right? A nice knife can deter rapists pretty well if applied to removing offensive protrusions.

      • I’m not sure I would trust a free gun fro the government — though I do believe that every citizen and legal resident, on turning 18, should get a $400 tax credit for purchasing a personal defense weapon.

        But I do think that those who understand the importance of being armed should have a foundation or three dedicated to helping the poor be armed. There are programs by private foundations to help those who can’t afford them on their own get computers; helping people be armed is to me a no-brainer. Back when finances weren’t so tight, I helped some in that situation, and I hope to be able to do so again.

        But for home defense, I’m not too worried — my old Arminius .22 mag revolver looks pretty nasty, and if I use up all eight rounds on an intruder and it doesn’t stop him, I can slap a magazine into the venerable old Enfield parked behind my bedroom door as fast as I ca pick it up, and if four rounds of .303 doesn’t do the job I have a very nice ice axe resting on the headboard of my bed. Though before it got that far, I figure my buddy/boarder will be moving in from the other end of the house with his own ballistic toy… if one of the neighbors who’s a LEO isn’t already coming in the door.

  35. Four identical Glock 29’s in 10mm and two Glock 29 receivers with AA .22 conversions for casual practice. Split them up between my two residences so I don’t have to go through the airline challenge. Also can send one ahead when travelling elsewhere.

    Remember that the police are going to confiscate your pistol after any incident. And guns can be stolen.

    • I own a G-20, but unless I’ve been hugely misinformed, I don’t see much point to the G-29. The shorter barrel negates the 10mm performance to the point where it might was well be a .40 S&W, or so I have heard.

      • Carry my pistol on my belt in a DeSantis Speed Scabbard. G20 very uncomfortable in my vehicle’s driver’s seat. G29 reasonable, doesn’t get pushed as hard by the bolster.

        W-W 175 grain Silvertip loads chronograph at 1,150 – 1,190 feet per second, depending upon temperature, from my G29s. Not the 1,320 fps my 1911 long slide delivers, but superior to the .40 S&W.

  36. I use duplicate pistols. sort of. I’m rather fond of the S&W M&P line. I started off with a 9 compact. then added a 9 full size. idea was compact for carry and full size for the nightstand. They function the same way. Then I added a 45. then a 45compact. then the M&P 22. they all function the same way, have nearly the same look and feel. then most recently I added an M&P shield to the collection. again, they all function the same way. come apart for service the same way. No matter how much I practice, if/when the time comes that I have pull one in the heat of the moment I don’t want to have to pause to think, do i have the smith? glock? or FN? auto or revolver on me ? is the safety up/down/ or does it have one? I even use the same make and style holster (safariland 6378 ALS) to eliminate as many variables as possible.

    • ^what he said. Shield for three months of the year, 9c when I’m wearing a jacket and a 9 pro when i’m out in the woods. Same manual of arms, similar point of aim and same trigger.

  37. There is more than one reason to have duplicate carry guns.

    1) Parts malfunction.
    Even the best manufacturers, custom shops, and so on will have a bad part, or one that wears out sooner than expected. If the unthinkable happens here, then what do you do while your EDC is out for repairs? Even good preventative maintenance can’t always identify a problem quickly enough to keep your EDC from being down a couple days – and what, then? And what if you’re not mechanically minded enough to replace the part yourself, or haven’t one spare?

    2) Confiscation (after use)
    Another horrible unthinkable, but one that we actually carry for. What would you do if Johnny Law wants your EDC for a few months for “investigation” or whatever? Some places will give it right back – after a bit – while others may keep it for up to a year or more, and make you come after them in court to get it back.

    3) Theft, Fire, and other loss
    Another catastrophe. What if you’re not carrying your EDC for whatever reason (going to an anti-gun relative’s, or out to an anti-gun/no-carry place that you can’t avoid, whatever) and someone breaks in and makes off with it? Or the house burns down? Or you’re caught in a natural disaster and separated from it/lose it? Some People of the Gun have gun safes that weigh so much, stealing or breaking into them is unlikely. Others? have a gun rug with a zipper on it, in the nightstand drawer. A giant safe, well constructed, might be practically proof against fire and crime, but it’s no guarantee against extreme situations (like tornadoes or earthquakes – the guns might be safe, but if your house is laying on your gun safe, you might have trouble getting to it).

    Certainly, if you have multiple EDC’s that you practice and train with, this isn’t an issue so much, but if you’re dedicated to one particular type of gun for whatever reason (small revolver, Nano-sized sub-compacts, etc.) then having a copy of the gun you’re best with, or can conceal the best, whatever, is important to have in stock while the main one is down. If you don’t at least have a spare of SOME kind, you’re inviting a visit from Murphy to mess up your carefully laid self-protection plans.

    So, duplicates? Good idea. Perhaps even three or four, as one person suggested.

  38. If you only have one gun for EDC, have a duplicate of that gun. This insures you have all he supports items for it in case you have to give it up. Personally I have several guns I can use for EDC and all related support items, however everyone does not have the resources to do that. So two each of your preferred EDC gun is the best option. Remember “two is one and one is none”

  39. I recently bought a duplicate of my EDC, but for different reasons. I travel for work, and didn’t want to run the risk of anything happening to my primary EDC going through airports/hotels/etc. But, it’s useful for all of the reasons listed above.

  40. “glock eats everything” the moto of the simple minded and inexperienced. every firearm has problems.

    Well think about the potato famine, if you only have one type of something and that something is discovered to have a flaw, then they all have that flaw. If one particular gun results in constant problems, having 2 of that gun, yields two guns with constant problems. i would get rid of it and go with what you “know” works.

    Then again, did this gun get disassembled and inspected? could have just been trash in the mechanics gumming it up.

  41. I have a Nano and a Shield. I don’t want to duplicate, I just want more than 1 option.

    Having said that, have you actually done a full cleaning of the Nano outside of simple field stripping? You can take apart the slide and clean the firing pin, saw if that was the issue, and could have saved yourself some cash from shipping.

    • I thought about that but it is under warrantee so let Beretta work it over. The shop is handling shipping. That’s an advantage to buying from your LGS.

    • The class was $25 and you have to take the class to get a range pass. The renewal is only $20 and you don’t have to retake the class. You have to be a County resident. The range is only open to the public one Saturday a month 10 am to 3 pm. Still a good deal if you go most of the time.

  42. Duplicate calibers. None of the guns i own or have owned are expensive. Not a hunter and I will never compete. But I do get a duplicate for holster wear, accuracy and familiararity.

  43. I was taught and believe “one is none, and two is one”. In the world where people have to work and money may be hard to spend on a second fire arm, one is better than nothing. I am a “belt and suspenders” kind of guy and feel better with two. Almost impossible for two to quit at the same time. I guess being out of ammo could do that, but that’s a whole different can of worms!

  44. 2 is 1.
    1 is none.

    I have more than 1 firearm I can carry, and duplicates of some of them. Of the twins, one is tasked as “range” and the other as “carry.” This way if my “range” firearm goes down I’m not affecting my carry options.

  45. My buddy had the same issue with his Nano. Turns out that there was a bunch of packing grease (cosmoline?) and carbon build up around the firing pin so he was getting light strikes. The gun shop where he bought it cleaned it for him and he hasnt had a problem since.

    • That was my suspicion, however, being new to firearms such as I am, I left it up to the gun shop employee to make that determination. He wasn’t the on-site gunsmith but he said it needed to go back to Beretta. I quickly agreed and had him mention the extractor problem in the work order. Since he is covering the two way shipping process, I figured it was worth letting the factory do the overhaul.
      Update: The Mrs. is growing attached to my Glock. When we were leaving the range yesterday, I pointed out a used, in new looking condition, Glock 19 Gen 3 identical to mine for $449. She said “after we pay our bills, get it.”

  46. I have 3 Glock 26s, 2 Glock 19s, a Glock 30S, a Glock 29 SF and a Glock 20SF. Oh, I have two Glock 17s too. So, yeah, back them up.

  47. We called it a day and told the guy in the shop what happened. He said, “Bad ammo”. I told him it worked in my GLOCK and he said “GLOCKs eat everything.”

    What a logic fail. The GLOCK eats everything? Even bad ammo? Clearly the ammo wasn’t bad, but the guy in the shop didn’t want to take back his conclusion.

    • Glocks don’t eat everything. I took a 16 hour, two day handgun class and there was a Glock 19 there that continually failed. He wasn’t using factory ammo, and he couldn’t keep it running.

  48. this might be an opportunity to decide if that is a firearm you consider reliable enough for carry.

    I have many firearms, but neither myself, nor my wife carry anything that isn’t a glock brand block or an M&P, and even those took awhile for me to feel confident.

    I have a gen 2 glock 19 that has well over 15,000 rounds. Of course it’s malfunctioned, as we run the gun to death, but extremely rarely and after thousands of rounds without cleaning. It has never had a parts breakage. Tap-rack-bang, she goes another 1000 without issue.

    • I’m not here to bash the Beretta Nano, nor am I going to defend it just because I bought it. It definitely had prior issues with extraction but after break in has rarely failed and not once has it failed with defensive ammo until this current situation which is certainly a maintenance issue. When it comes back from Beretta I will run it through the paces and determine its worthiness.

      • Sounds like you’re a pretty smart guy, not falling into the gun-ego trap.

        Nano’s are super cool guns. I love the idea, and I’ve never shot them all to hell to make up my own damn mind about them. I’ve never had a commercial 92 hold up to really nasty shooting before.

        I liked the article, thanks for the read.

  49. I recommend duplicates for the simple reason that if you ever actually have to use the weapon you won’t get to keep it afterward, it will go into evidence and you will be then unarmed. Even if everything goes well in court there’s no guaranty that you will get the gun back.

    I buy a quality inexpensive gun, upgrade the sights, and that’s it. If you can’t afford to loose it you shouldn’t be carrying it. M&P FTW!

  50. Has others have said, this is more an argument for preventative maintance than an edc gun that is going to remain largely unfired. You could go a step further and opt for historically more reliable firearms like a Glock.

    I also think this might be a good reason to get a backup gun, oughbif our wife keeps her carry gun in her purse the time for retrieval of a backup I think is going to be too long once one realizes the main carry gun is a lost cause.

  51. You should practice regularly with your firearms, and consider carrying a backup, since everything will eventually fail. You *want* your stuff to fail in practice, not when you actually need it.

    The first time it failed to shoot, it should have immediately been tested and repaired.

  52. Must be too many meds for the flu . . . .

    I saw the title and read it as “Should Your Own Duplicate Carry Guns?”
    My first thought was, “I have a duplicate?”
    My second was “Why should I care if he carries guns?”

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